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But what do software developers think about the Internet of Things (IoT)?

How agile developers view the Internet of Things

John Jeremiah, Evangelist, GitLab

Big data strategists, high tech maintenance engineers, and business leaders of all stripes see the Internet of Things (IoT) as fertile ground for automation in the near future. The more machines can talk to each other, performing activities like scheduled maintenance, environmental management, monitoring of things like pacemakers and hearing aids, the less people have to worry about the tedium involved with monitoring things themselves.

But what do software developers, the folks who will build the apps that connect the billions of data sources comprising the IoT, think about this relatively new territory?

According to an HP online survey of 610 developers and IT professionals*, the IoT is more than just a buzzword. Developers clearly see Internet-connected devices and their applications as short-term business opportunities, not short-term fads. In the next five years, developers see connected cars and homes as important market opportunities, and many other categories are also catching on.

The IoT is poised to join mobile apps and big data as a major technology category. Although the market is still emerging, developers are already showing significant interest in developing connected devices, as Figure 1 suggests.

Developer interest in key technology trends (% personally interested)

Figure 1. Developer interest in key technology trends (% personally interested, total respondents = 601)

Figure 2 shows that nearly half of respondents already believe that IoT will be a transformative technology.

Classification of IoT as

Figure 2: Respondents who classify the IoT as "transformative", "important", "niche/minor" or "fad"

Connected automobiles: a huge opportunity

Developers see strong market opportunities in connected automobile technology, as shown in Figure 3. Their confidence in this sector might be influenced by recent media coverage of auto technology trends, such as built-in Wi-Fi.

Home automation and security fall close behind in terms of predicted market opportunity, while larger, infrastructure-oriented applications are less likely to be seen as five-year opportunities.

Comparison of applications to be developed for the IoT

Figure 3: Types of connected devices respondents say will have the largest market opportunity in five years.


*About this research

HP Research interviewed 601 development and IT professionals using a 15-minute online survey.

Profile of respondents

• Position: 401 professional developers, 200 IT professionals recruited from panel of IT B2B employees

• Size of business: 32 percent SORG (10-99 employees), 31% MORG (100-999) and 37 percent LORG (1000+)

• Age range: 24 to 65

Key topic areas

• Primary development methodology used in organization and most recent project

• Timeframe for agile adoption (among those using agile)

• Perceptions/beliefs about agile development